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SYDNEY, June 19, 2018 (News Wires) - Apple was on Tuesday fined a $9 million by an Australian court for making false claims about consumer rights when refusing to fix faulty iPhones and iPads previously repaired by a third party.

Customers of the US tech giant had complained to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) after an operating system update disabled their devices in a global issue known as “error 53”.

The users were told by Apple that they were not eligible for a remedy if the iPhone or iPad had been repaired by another company.

The ACCC took Apple to the Federal Court last year over allegedly false or misleading representations to customers with faulty iPhones and iPads about their rights under the law.

“If a product is faulty, customers are legally entitled to a repair or a replacement under the Australian Consumer Law, and sometimes even a refund,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said in a statement.

“The court declared the mere fact that an iPhone or iPad had been repaired by someone other than Apple did not, and could not, result in the consumer guarantees ceasing to apply, or the consumer’s right to a remedy being extinguished.”

Apple admitted misleading at least 275 Australian customers over the issue between February 2015 to February 2016 on its US website, by its Australian store staff and on its customer service phone calls.

The consumer watchdog said Apple had also committed to providing new devices as replacements, after allegations that the company was giving customers refurbished goods instead after a device suffered a major failure.

There was no immediate comment from Apple, which has previously described the error as appearing “when a device fails a security test”. It has released an operating system update to fix the issue.


DUBAI, June 11, 2018 (News Wires) - Facebook has announced that Arabic is now available as a language on the latest version of the Facebook for iPhone. In addition to the existing availability of Arabic on desktop and Android, this move will help people across the region use Facebook in their native language. This is just another example of Facebook's commitment to the MENA region.

Arabic is widely spoken amongst the 169 million people who use Facebook every month in the MENA region on mobile. This update is a result of Facebook's collaboration with veteran translators from the region through the Translate Facebook app, which enables anyone to translate the Facebook interface into their own language.

Jonathan Labin, Managing Director, Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan at Facebook said: "Languages are vital to our mission of bringing the world closer together and helping people build communities. They carry tradition, culture and unique opinions, and give us the opportunity to start meaningful conversations with different people. With this new update to Facebook on iPhone, we hope more people can connect with each other in the Middle East and North Africa region."

Facebook is now available in more than 100 languages, reaching over one billion people that use Facebook in a language other than English. People can easily switch their language on Facebook by navigating to the settings menu and selecting their preferred language settings.

To learn more about the Translate Facebook app, visit the Help Center.





SAN JOSE, California, June 9, 2018 (News Wires) - Apple Inc unveiled the latest version of its operating system for the iPhone and iPad, iOS 12, saying it would make older devices such as the iPhone 6 work better.

At its annual developer conference in San Jose, Apple said that iOS 12 could carry out simple tasks, such as opening apps, up to twice as fast as its predecessor, iOS 11. The company said the operating system would work on the same devices as iOS 11.





BEIJING, June 3, 2018 (News Wires) - Unveiled at a press event echoing Apple's keynotes, the latest flagship smartphone from Xiaomi has nothing - or at least very little - to envy of the iPhone X, with top-end design and performance, 3D facial recognition and a dual camera.

Unlike Apple's flagship, the Xiaomi Mi 8 runs Google's Android operating system and will sell for a considerably lower price.

The Xiaomi Mi 8 has a 6.21-inch (2248 x 1080-pixel) AMOLED screen with a borderless design and a notch-style cutout. It is powered by a latest-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor and 6GB RAM, and has a rear-facing dual camera (2x12MP) with integrated AI to recognise the kind of photo being taken and instantly optimize the results.

Xiaomi claims that the handset blows competitors out of the water in the famous AnTutu performance index, jumping into the lead with a score surpassing 300,000.

The phone also storms its way into the DxOMark photo and video quality benchmark with a score of 99, placing it just behind the Huawei P20 Pro and the HTC U12+, on par with the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, and ahead of Apple's iPhone X.

In addition to the standard Mi8, the smartphone will land in an impressive Mi 8 Explorer Edition, which gets an in-display fingerprint scanner and a quirky clear casing on the back. And while the Mi 8 uses infrared facial recognition, the Mi 8 Explorer Edition has a 3D system comparable to that of the iPhone X.

Xiaomi also presented the Mi 8 SE (with a name possibly inspired by the iPhone SE), a more affordable smartphone with a smaller form factor, featuring a 5.88-inch display and a Snapdragon 710 SoC complete with multi-core AI engine.

The Chinese manufacturer plans to roll out its latest models to all its current markets worldwide. And if the Chinese pricing is anything to go by, the handset should prove an extremely competitive rival for the Apple flagship, with the Mi 8 starting at 2,699 CNY (RM1675.37).

The Mi 8 Explorer Edition comes in at 3,699 CNY while the Mi 8 SE starts at 1,799 CNY.


SAN FRANCISCO, June 3, 2018 (News Wires) - Apple Inc next week will debut tools to let two iPhone users share augmented reality while limiting the personal data sent to its servers, two people familiar with the matter said this week.

Augmented reality (AR) allows viewers to see virtual structures superimposed on their surroundings via their smartphones or other devices. It is the technology used in mobile game Pokemon Go, and by industry, such as factories seeking to map new assembly lines. Apple and rival Google are racing to release AR tools to attract software developers to their platforms.

Both are seeking to allow two people to share data so they can see the same virtual object in the same space via their individual devices. But that has sparked privacy concerns - if AR apps become commonplace, people will be scanning their homes and other personal spaces routinely, developers say.

Apple designed its two-player system to work phone-to-phone in part because of those privacy concerns, one of the people familiar with the matter said. The approach, which has not been previously reported, differs from Google’s, which requires scans of a player’s environment to be sent to, and stored in, the cloud.

Apple declined to comment. Bloomberg previously reported that Apple would announce multiplayer AR at its developer conference, which begins on Monday.

AR has become a major focus at both companies. Apple CEO Tim Cook has called it “big and profound,” and the company released its first tools to let software developers make AR apps last year.

With that release, Apple made AR possible on many phones without any modifications. The move spurred Google to abandon an AR effort that required phones to have special sensors and instead build tools for AR on conventional phones.

The race between the two has heated up since then. At its own developer conference in May, Google rolled out tools for making multiplayer AR games. The system, called Cloud Anchors, requires the first player to scan his or her environment and then upload the raw mapping data to Google’s servers, where it is translated into a rough representation of the area.

The subsequent players perform a scan that sends more limited information to the same server, which matches the phones up and lets them each see the same virtual object on the same physical space.

However, Apple’s system avoids storing any raw mapping scans of a user’s surroundings in the cloud, said the two sources. Google says it will discard raw mapping data after seven days.

The precise details of how Apple’s new system will work, or if it would support three or more players, were not available. But a phone-to-phone approach could eventually run into technical limitations. It could end up being harder to handle three or more players at a time if a player who started the game drops out, a person involved in Google’s AR efforts said.

“For artistic purposes, it’s phenomenal” to be able to precisely map out a user’s surroundings and overlay digital objects, said Joel Ogden, chief executive of Construct Studio, which makes augmented and virtual reality games.

“But we’re definitely going into some uncharted territory. There are a lot of really severe privacy implications we haven’t really explored yet,” he added.

SAN FRANCISCO, May 12, 2018 (News Wires) - Apple sent out a new support document to retail stores, as well as Authorized Service Providers, which outlines an update repair process for iPhone X users experiencing issues with FaceID.

The famous Face-ID, the 3D-sensing face recognition system, is not quite as perfect as it first appeared to be, as it seems that enough iPhone X customers have had issues to put Apple into motion.

The support document was obtained and the instructions published by MacRumors, which says it instructs employees to begin by running a diagnostics tests to clarify if the customer's issue with the Face ID could be resolved with a rear camera repair. And should that not be the solution, the customer will receive a whole unit replacement, basically a new phone.

The rear camera? Yes, it seems that the dual-lens camera at the back is somehow linked to the Face ID functionality.

According to 9to5Mac, the brand says this is “in order to provide the best customer experience.”

However this is not great news for the brand as it follows a recent program to replace the 13-inch Macbook Pro batteries, should they have been sold between 2016-2017 and be facing problems.

Meanwhile a petition has also recently circulated via Change.Org to recall and “replace the keyboards on [current-generation Macbook Pro models] with new, redesigned keyboards that just work. Because, these keyboards don't work.”


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